FAIR and balanced land use laws must be maintained for Queensland's agricultural sector to grow to its full potential and to create more jobs in our regions.
That’s according to AgForce president Grant Maudsley who was speaking on the one year anniversary of the historic vote in the Queensland Parliament to reject the Palaszczuk government's flawed vegetation management laws.
"Farmers manage vegetation on our land to produce food and fibre, and we need balanced and sensible vegetation management laws so we can keep producing food and fibre," Mr Maudsley said.
"It's so disappointing that a year since their defeat in Parliament, the Palaszczuk government still refuses to consult, compromise and commit to a bi-partisan and workable land use policy that stands the test of time.
The reality is farmers are the true environmentalists who love and care for their land and know how to manage it responsibly.
"Instead, key figures in the Palaszczuk government maintain they will re-introduce the same flawed laws if re-elected, and make it a priority in their election strategy.
"AgForce believes better environmental outcomes can be achieved by supporting voluntary landholder conservation activities through programs like Grazing BMP and Nature Refuges, rather than introducing harsh and unnecessary regulations.
"The reality is farmers are the true environmentalists who love and care for their land and know how to manage it responsibly, so why make a difficult job even harder."
Mr Maudsley said the Queensland government's own Statewide Landcover and Tree Study revealed that only about 0.1 per cent of the state's vegetation was cleared each year and about two-thirds of that was to control regrowth.
"AgForce has always said we are willing to take a science and evidence based approach on this issue, which means looking at all the facts, including how much vegetation has grown not just how much has been cleared," he said.
"There is so much potential for sustainable high value agriculture development in Queensland, including for food crops like chickpeas, feedstock for biofuels and supplementary feed for livestock, but we need government policies that take agriculture forward not hold us back."